Modern help desks transform the customer experience

Help desks may look different from one organization to the next, but the value they bring remains constant. Whether serving internal employees or acting as a technical support headquarters, help desks can be a key differentiator between a positive and negative customer experience.

Woman working in office at desk
Woman working at desk

What is a help desk?

Help desks originally began as physical desks where employees would answer customer or employee calls to provide IT break/fix support. Today’s help desk reflects an evolution in customer experience innovation, as they enable customers to receive support through intelligent self-service, web chat, SMS, and video.

Often a function of modern contact center solutions like Zoom Contact Center, help desks are powered by robust software that helps teams manage incoming issues, route service request tickets, and communicate with customers. No longer limited to a physical desk, cloud-based help desks can support hundreds of agents and supervisors in remote and hybrid environments.

How do help desks work?

Here’s an example of how help desks work. Imagine a customer reaching out for support and the manager or supervisor then assigns an incoming request, or issue, to a ticket. This ticket is added and tracked in a queue and then routed to an experienced help desk agent. If the help desk is part of a contact center or call center that has advanced call routing capabilities or uses telephony software such as automatic call distribution (ACD) and interactive voice response (IVR), customer calls can be routed automatically and added to a queue with a pre-established set of rules that matches the inquiry to a qualified agent.

Woman looking at monitor

Typical help desk workflow

Help desk workflows can vary based on a variety of factors, such as the software used, a team’s structure, and a customer’s individual preferences. But with the help of Zoom’s contact center solution, here’s how you can optimize the common help desk workflow:

  • mobile and desktop
    1. Omnichannel support

    Users request help through their preferred digital channel (web chat, SMS, voice, video)

  • Ticket
    2. Create a ticket

    Help desk software generates a ticket for agents to begin working to resolve an issue.

  • logistics
    3. Enhanced routing

    Customers are routed to the most qualified or experienced agent through the contact center’s intelligent, skills-based routing.

  • paper settings
    4. Manage the request

    Zoom Contact Center integrates with help desk software for agents to answer calls and manage customer interactions.

  • Questions
    5. Communicate with back-office experts

    For additional help, agents can communicate with teammates through Zoom’s UC solution (Team Chat, Zoom Phone) without leaving their help desk application.

  • Webcam
    6. Video escalation

    Agents can elevate a voice or chat interaction to a video call to improve the customer interaction and deliver a high-touch, more personalized engagement.

Two people looking at laptop

What are the best help desk software features?

The best help desk software features are designed to automate customer-care tasks with a focus on ticket management, communication, and reporting capabilities. This way, agents can spend their time on more important tasks and customers can request help or self-serve at their convenience.

While most software tools are designed to simplify day-to-day tasks, working with too many applications can be fatiguing and actually decrease productivity. Zoom Contact Center’s open platform integrates with popular help desk software like Zendesk and ServiceNow so that agents can work within a single application while engaging with customers and colleagues.

What are the benefits of help desk software?

Help desk software automates ticket requests and enables agents to resolve tickets faster. In addition, it can:

  • Streamline processes

  • Reduce workloads

  • Improve customer service with consistent quality standards

  • Provide better insight into your company’s network and device security

  • Improve employee productivity

  • Improve customer experience

Man in home office
Man looking at monitor

What can Zoom Contact Center do for your IT help desk?

There’s no denying the power of a positive customer experience and what it can mean for your business. But to deliver exceptional service, employees need to be engaged and equipped with intuitive communications systems that integrate with your help desk software. After all, happy employees often lead to happier customers.

With this in mind, we developed our contact-center-as-a-service (CCaaS) solution to give help desk teams the flexibility they need to work from anywhere. Built for the hybrid workforce, Zoom Contact Center streamlines communications between agents and supervisors regardless of their physical location. Our combined unified communications and contact center experience enhances collaboration between contact center agents and back-office experts to drive faster and more accurate resolution.

What are the benefits of Zoom Contact Center?

Because it’s omnichannel, our cloud-based contact center helps agents deliver prompt, accurate, and highly personalized responses to their customers over a variety of touchpoints, including voice, web chat, text, and of course, video. Built-in analytics complement common help desk software metrics to determine where improvement is needed and maximize your ROI.

We can help you:

  • Increase flexibility and scalability with one platform

  • Minimize complexity with a centralized administration portal and dual-purpose desktop clients

  • Improve return on investment (ROI)

  • Reduce your total cost of ownership

  • Minimize help desk staff turnover

  • Deliver efficient, personalized support

  • Decrease abandon rates

  • Understand agent performance and areas for improvement

  • Improve customer satisfaction scores (CSAT) and first contact resolution (FCR)

Woman sitting on couch using laptop



One way to think about a help desk is to consider where you might go for a technical issue at work. Perhaps you need help upgrading your computer’s operating system. Or, you’re having issues with a business app and need to contact the company for help. While both of these examples fit under a general “customer service” umbrella, it’s the help desk agent who is responsible for helping you.

Help desks may serve customers internal to a business, such as employees and contractors, while overseeing technical issues related to hardware, software, and network usage. They can also have external customers when providing technical assistance or support. Regardless of whom they serve, help desk agents and supervisors typically respond to what’s known as incident management issues, but it’s not uncommon for them to also act as service desks and provide customer support that goes beyond break-fix requests.

Sometimes, a help desk is a catch-all for internal and external customer technical support, or it can play a role in a larger customer service department. Because help desks can impact a business’s Net Promoter Score (NPS) and customer satisfaction score (CSAT), it’s not uncommon for customer support teams to use help desk software to track performance metrics related to customer satisfaction and customer experience (CX).


Traditionally speaking, help desks are similar to call centers in that they are a way for customers to request support or seek help with a problem. But call centers differ from help desks for a few reasons. First, they are typically less technical and address overall customer service-type queries for things like product questions, processing returns, and facilitating sales. Second, with call centers, customers are limited to connecting with agents via telephone support only.

Help desks, on the other hand, provide more technical or IT-related support and assist with tasks such as resetting passwords, ordering or setting up new computer hardware, troubleshooting technology, or responding to major network issues. Depending on the communications platform and help desk software that a business chooses, customers can request support via multiple channels (phone, web chat, SMS, or email) and aren’t just limited to voice, like in a call center.

Both help desks and call centers bring tremendous value to an organization, as they can be the first point of contact between a business and its customers, and make or break a positive customer experience.

Basic help desk software includes a POC, or point of contact, to receive customer queries, and a ticket management system to organize, track, process, and route tickets for faster resolution. Other basic features of help desk software include:


  • an aggregation tool to collect queries for knowledge-base articles
  • forums for accessing information such as FAQs or community-answered topics
  • dashboards for easy reporting and measurement
  • analytics to measure agent performance, productivity, and customer satisfaction metrics

Zoom Contact Center for help desks

Every touchpoint in your customers’ journey is an opportunity to make a lasting impact. Discover how Zoom’s CCaaS solution can help your IT help desk teams uncover new efficiencies, reduce costs, and transform your customer experience.

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